A title bout between Alexander Volkanovski and Yair Rodriguez is confirmed. The date is UFC 290 on July 8 in Las Vegas, Nevada, in the T-Mobile Arena, first reported by FOX Sports, later confirmed by Ariel Helwani.
This 5-round title fight takes place in the Featherweight (145 lbs) division.
Alexander Volkanovski is the reigning Featherweight Champion, holding a professional record of 25-2 (12-1 UFC). He holds notable wins over Max Holloway, José Aldo, and Brian Ortega.
Yair Rodriguez is the Interim Featherweight Champion and has a professional record of 15-3 (12-3 UFC). He claims credible wins over "The Korean Zombie" Chan Sung Jung, Brian Ortega, and Josh Emmett.
Official odds have yet to be released.
Alexander "The Great" Volkanovski is coming off a close decision loss to Lightweight Champion Islam Makhachev. He attempted to become the fifth double champ in UFC history at UFC 284. The fight would be closely contested, including an incredible finish for the Featherweight Champion, knocking down Makhachev in the closing minute of round five. Despite the loss, "The Great" retained his Pound-For-Pound spot above Makhachev and now has his eyes set on Rodriguez. Volkanovski is one of the most dominant Champions we've seen in the sport, already having five title victories, including three wins over former Champion Max Hollway. Volkanovski will look to use his highly technical striking and complete skillset to defend his title for a fifth time.
Yair "El Pantera" Rodriguez is at the peak of his career, coming off a dominant victory over Josh Emmett. While Volkanovski was challenging for the Lightweight title, "El Pantera" and Emmett fought for the right to be the next contender for the Champion. He would land devastating kicks on Emmett throughout the fight and finish the bout with a triangle choke after rocking him in the second round. Rodriguez is now the Interim Featherweight Champion, and he'll look to use diverse striking and his underrated submission game to become the undisputed Champion.
This is a massive fight in the Featherweight division, and with twenty-four combined finishes and thirteen performance bonuses between the two, expect excitement in this bout. Who do you have winning? As a member of the Verdict Community, let us know your prediction in the comments below.